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May 16, 2013

Book Notes - Cecil Castellucci "Odd Duck"

Odd Duck

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.

Previous contributors include Bret Easton Ellis, Kate Christensen, Kevin Brockmeier, George Pelecanos, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Myla Goldberg, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others.

Odd Duck, the new children's book written by Cecil Castellucci and illustrated by Sara Varon, is an instant classic that celebrates friendship, individuality, and the oddness in all of us.

Booklist wrote of the book:

"Varon's gentle art and Castellucci's nuanced writing combine in a sweet, quiet tale that celebrates the joys of being unique."

Stream a Spotify playlist of these tunes. If you don't have Spotify yet, sign up for the free service.

In her own words, here is Cecil Castellucci's Book Notes music playlist for her children's book, Odd Duck:

Dancing Ducks
illustration by Sara Varon

My new book is for the birds. Or more precisely it's for you odd ducks. It's a hybrid picture book /graphic novel for kids but really it is also for adults. It is illustrated by the wonderful Sara Varon (Go pick up her book Robot Dreams if you haven't read it yet. It's brilliant.) The story is simple tale from the pond. Theodora, a duck who lives by herself and has her own way of doing things – not flying, (not even south for winter), swimming with a teacup on her head, reading space duck mysteries, space books and romances, and eating mango salsa on her duck pellets - has her life disrupted when a new duck, Chad moves into the empty house next door. Chad has dyed his unkempt feathers strange colors, he dances like a wild thing and he makes large art sculptures which he proudly displays in his front yard. From the get go you can tell that these two ducks are most likely not going to get along. But as in any odd couple story, with a little time and understanding, these duck hearts just might open up. So here for you are Odd Duck's Theodora and Chad's "Songs for the Birds."

Theodora: "There are a lot of songs I like called 'Little Bird.' But Chad, are you sure some the songs you've picked are actually music and not just random noise?"

Thea likes things to be a little mellow. A little bit dreamy. She likes something to listen to while she gazes up at the night stars. Something lyrical that she can sip rose hip tea to. And most of all Theadora likes music that you can sway and swoon to.

"Little Bird" by The Weepies from Hideaway
"I'm Like a Bird" by Nelly Furtado from Whoa, Nelly!
"Tiny Birds" by Yo La Tengo from Summer Sun
"Little Bird" by Imogen Heap from Ellipse
"Talking Bird" by Death Cab for Cutie from Narrow Stairs
"Morning Bird" by Sade from Soldier of Love
"Singing To The Birds" by Lisa Germano from Excerpts From A Love Circus
"Lady Bird" by Fats Navarro from Lady Bird

Chad: "Oh! I like all the songs on your list, Thea. I like a great 'Lady Bird' song. I've got one you might like!"

Chad likes his music to be bold and upfront. He wants to be able to shake a feather or two, but he also wants something that can to inspire him when he's outside working on his art. Chad's tastes are wide and eclectic. He's not afraid of classic rock and he's bold enough to appreciate a good girl ripper. He can also dial it down and get a little soft.

"Lady Bird" by Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood from Nancy & Lee
"Free Bird" by Lynyrd Skynyrd
"Little Bird" by Annie Lennox from Diva
"Bird Song" by Florence + The Machine from Lungs
"Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley from Exodus
"Night Bird Flying" by Jimi Hendrix
"Pretty Bird" by Jenny Lewis from Acid Tongue
"Surfin' Bird" by The Trashmen from Tube City - The Best of The Trashmen

Cecil Castellucci and Odd Duck links:

the author's website
the illustrator's website
the author's Wikipedia entry
excerpt from the book
order a signed copy of the book

100 Scope Notes review
Kirkus Reviews review
Publishers Weekly review

Comic Book resources interview with the author
Hero Complex interview with the author
Largehearted Boy Book Notes essay by the author for Year of the Beasts

also at Largehearted Boy:

Book Notes (2012 - ) (authors create music playlists for their book)
Book Notes (2005 - 2011) (authors create music playlists for their book)
my 11 favorite Book Notes playlist essays

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
52 Books, 52 Weeks (weekly book reviews)
Antiheroines (interviews with up and coming female comics artists)
Atomic Books Comics Preview (weekly comics highlights)
Daily Downloads (free and legal daily mp3 downloads)
guest book reviews
Largehearted Word (weekly new book highlights)
musician/author interviews
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
Shorties (daily music, literature, and pop culture links)
Soundtracked (composers and directors discuss their film's soundtracks)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from the week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

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